Products Like GrandCare Can Help You Stay In Touch With Loved Ones and Reduce Isolation and Loneliness.
Social isolation does more than just make our elderly lonely. More recent research suggests that loneliness is actually a predictor of functional decline and even death. A study published in the Journal of Internal Medicine late in 2012 showed that for adults who are over the age of 60, loneliness can have adverse health effects. It can worsen existing medical conditions, as well as contribute to new ones.
But many elders have trouble using computers to stay in touch.
So what can families and long distance caregivers do to help fight loneliness in their senior loved one?
- If your loved one is able to get out and about in their community but they no longer drive, arrange transportation for them. The local agency on aging or senior center can be a good resource to help you with this. Most maintain a list of quality, reliable senior transportation services. They can also connect you with events and activities your loved one can participate in close to home.
- Talk with local religious organizations to see what senior services they offer. Many have friendly visitor programs with volunteers who make house calls to provide companionship. Most can also arrange transportation to weekly services.
- Consider employing the services of a companion, homemaker, personal care assistant, or live-in caregiver. They not only provide your loved one with help around the house, but also a friendly visitor to chat with a few days each week, or around the clock.
- Technology can also provide a variety of solutions. One that allows you to have a virtual face-to-face conversation once or twice a day with your older family member is GrandCare. This senior-friendly system doesn’t require a keyboard or a mouse to operate. It requires only a simple touch of the screen to open a video connection. Adult children and grandchildren can video chat and share the daily news with their aging family member. GrandCare also allows caregivers to send reminders about appointments and medications and to share family photos. The senior can even send voice emails with this system.